- Associated Press - Tuesday, January 13, 2015

ARLINGTON, Texas — Ezekiel Elliott ran for four touchdowns and Cardale Jones accounted for two scores as Ohio State overcame four turnovers to beat Oregon 42-20 and win the national championship Monday night.

The fourth-seeded Buckeyes had a 21-10 halftime lead and were driving again when Jalin Marshall let a pass bounce off his hands into the arms of Oregon’s Danny Mattingly.

On the next play, Heisman Trophy winner Marcus Mariota threw a 70-yard scoring pass to Byron Marshall, who almost had a touchdown taken away for the second time this season for dropping the ball before he crossed the goal line.

The score that pulled the second-seeded Ducks to 21-17 in the first title game under the four-team playoff system was held up on review, which showed the ball starting to come out while it was over the goal line.

Marshall had a touchdown taken away for dropping the ball too soon in a 62-13 season-opening win against South Dakota.

The second-seeded Ducks had a chance for their first lead since Mariota’s 7-yard scoring pass to Keanon Lowe on the opening drive of the game after Jones lost the ball while winding up to throw. Arik Armstead recovered at the Ohio State 23.

Oregon reached the 6, but had to settle for Aidan Schneider’s second short field goal of the game and a 21-20 deficit.

The Buckeyes answered with the second and third touchdown runs from Elliott, who secured his third straight 200-yard game before the end of the third quarter.

The sophomore from St. Louis had a 33-yard run for Ohio State’s first score and went 9 yards on the final play of the third quarter to push what had been a 14-point lead in the first half back to eight. His 2-yard plunge early in the fourth quarter pushed the lead to 15, the largest deficit of the season for the Ducks.

Jones had 200 yards passing and another 30 rushing, including several bruising runs, though three quarters. That included a second-quarter plunge inches from the goal line after his run on the previous play was ruled a touchdown but overturned on review.

The Ducks are bidding for their first national championship, with Mariota trying to become the seventh player since 1996 to win the Heisman and a national title in the same season. Florida State’s Jameis Winston did it last season.

Slightly more than half the crowd of 85,689 at the oversized $1.2 billion home of the Dallas Cowboys was filled with red-clad Ohio State fans hoping for the Buckeyes’ fifth national title, but first under coach Urban Meyer, who won two at Florida.

The Buckeyes had two more promising drives stopped by turnovers in the second quarter of a game that had a combined 810 yards total offense going into the fourth.

On Ohio State’s first scoring drive, Jones threw consecutive 26-yard passes, the first when the Buckeyes faced third down from their 5-yard line.

That pass was to Corey Smith and the second went to Jalin Marshall, who later converted a fourth-and-2 on a shovel pass that picked up the first down by the nose of the football. Elliott’s scoring run came two plays later.

It was the second-longest scoring drive of the season for the Buckeyes.

Elliott later ran 17 yards to the Oregon 1, setting up Jones’ scoring pass to Nick Vannett for a 14-7 lead with 1:08 left in the first.

Oregon’s game-opening drive was kept alive when a run by Mariota initially ruled a fumble recovered by the Buckeyes was overturned on a review that showed his knee down before Curtis Grant stripped the ball.

The fast-paced, high-scoring Ducks punted on four of five drives after the quick score – and were a combined 0 of 6 on third and fourth downs – before driving to Aidan Schneider’s 26-yard field goal with 48 seconds remaining in the half.

The failed fourth-down try came with Oregon trailing 14-7 in the second quarter, when Thomas Tyner was gang-tackled a yard short of the goal line on an inside run from the 3.

Mariota had 263 yards passing through three quarters.

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